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Environmental Appraisals

Volume 409: debated on Friday 18 July 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many of the Department's policies have been screened for their environmental impact since June 2001; how many environmental appraisals have been conducted, and on what policy issues; and what information has been published about these screenings and appraisals. [124712]

The Integrated Policy Appraisal (IPA) tool is being piloted within Defra and allows policymakers to assess the environmental impacts of their policies. In addition, new guidance on Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA), published by the Cabinet Office in January 2003, requires policy to be appraised for its anticipated environmental impacts, as well as social and economic ones; in order to deliver on the Government's commitment to sustainable development.Up to date figures for the number of IPAs and those RIAs which contain an assessment of environmental impacts, are not currently available. We are planning to collate this information over the summer and I will respond with the figure in the Autumn.All completed RIAs are published on the Defra website at www.defra.gov.uk/corporate/ria/default.htm.